Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

A Welcome Performer

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

A Welcome Performer

Article excerpt

Byline: ALAN NICHOL

NEXT Friday another songster returns to the region and he can expect his usual warm welcome.

Texan songwriter, Sam Baker, is an undeniably charismatic performer with a neat line in dry humour and wonderfully literate songs. His three albums to date - Pretty World, Mercy and Cotton - maintain a very high standard throughout.

He has learned from some of the best, as he explains: "Stephen Foster's melodies are so beautiful. Randy Newman was a pretty influential thing, when Newman started doing that stuff out of the South.

C H A - Sam "Leonard Cohen, because he's so exact. I like all the anger in that early Dylan stuff. And I thought Joni Mitchell was a remarkable writer. Guy Clark was a beautiful singer and a stunning storyteller, but I thought Van Zandt was just a terrific poet. Intuitive, beautiful, clear. But also Lightnin' Hopkins.

"When he sings about coming in and his kids are crying because they're hungry, and he doesn't have any money to feed them - that's about as powerful as you can go. …

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